Spot the stars to protect the dark skies

Organization(s):SOU "Orde Chopela"
Student(s):Barbara Bashevska and David Damjanoski
Grade Level:Secondary School (grades 9-12, ages 14-18)
GLOBE Teacher(s):Karolina Damjanoska
Report Type(s):Standard Research Report
Date Submitted:03/31/2016

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The light pollution is ecological (it influences the biodiversity), energetic, economical, astronomical problem. The light pollution is wrongly directed or abused light which is generally a result of the inappropriate use of the external lighting. Through history people looked at the stars trying to understand the events around them, but today it is a real privilege to see the Milky Way. The ecological effects on the biodiversity causes fast disappearing of the ecosystems and species extinction.
With Globe at night program (GaN) we have opportunity to get to know not only the light pollution, but also it’s measuring in a relatively simple way using constellations. GaN is part of the GLOBE project which is a worldwide scientific and educational project, which coordinates the work of students, teachers and scientists to study and understand the global environment .
Under this project, we have carried out measurements of light pollution by measuring the brightness of the sky in an urban environment (Prilep) and rural (rural settlement Novo Selo). These two areas differ in the number of residents, in altitude and climate. By comparing the measurements we extracted conclusions presented in this paper.
We have estimated the light pollution by measuring the limiting magnitude of stars from the constellation Orion and Perseus and additionally we have used the Sky Quality Meter to map a city and village at different locations with intention to identify dark sky oases.
With these activities we want to turn attention to the problem of light pollution which at first glance does not seem so, but in fact is a very serious problem. The solution is in all of us, or the more people know about the harmful effects of light pollution overall fauna and flora, and humans, so it would be better for all. I.e. all together we can change things for better.


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